Friday, March 19, 2010

Shamrock Temari

Mary Corbet at Needle'nThread posted a a Celtic Cross for St. Patrick's day. I love knotted patterns, and when I looked at this pattern I started to wonder if I could translate it into a temari.

I could see it stitched on a c8, but I had an awful time trying to get the squares in the center, the thread bent too much to use a band without a stitch, and having to add a stitch there would not work with the interlacing. I could have gone with a tri-wing, but I decided to add an extra support line for the square. When I did that I saw the design pop out at me, and went with it. (I added an extra band around the square.)


My picture is off by 45 degrees, but I hope you can see the correlation. I have started stitching several times without knowing what was going to turn out, but this is the first time I was trying to stitch with a pattern in mind, and trying to make the thread follow the "vision" I was seeing. I had to take out my first, second, third, and probably 4th tries; luckily the finished stitching covers the green stains from taking the green thread out so many times.

When I was done with the green this temari still felt a little undressed. I could see a pathway for some bands, but I couldn't work out how the weaving would work. I pulled out the quilling paper I have for measuring and pinned it around those pathways, and figured out how to do the weaving.

I'm pretty pleased by how this turned out!

I took another picture of my triangles temari so you could see how the triangles form a star.


I love the colors on this one, but I'm still wondering if there is too much gap between the triangles.

I'm having a very hard time getting used to the time change. I haven't been able to fall asleep at my usual time ("I'm NOT sleepy!"), and then, when I got so tired I could fall asleep on time, I started waking up an hour earlier in the morning! It's a good thing it's been sunny all week, because if I was tired AND depressed because of no sun I would be impossible to live with. One problem at a time, I hope I can deal.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

300th Post!

This is my 300th post. When I started, I had no idea if I could find enough to talk about for more than a month... I guess I'm more of a talker than I thought.

I finished the front of P's stocking last night, but will have to wait until tomorrow until he sees it. I'm really looking forward to his reaction. I think I will put it away now with C's until Christmas is closer, and then there will be more incentive to finish by adding the tag (with names), the hanging loop, and the backing (to both of them). This guy is very sparkly, and cute!


It's been sunny so I've been enjoying the boost of energy that comes from that. I was working on a temari last night, not for any challenge or Stitch-along, just something for me. I was hoping to show you today, but it's not done yet.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

More Quilting memories

After learning "everything there is to know about quilts" from my grandma, I decided I should start putting it into practice for myself. This is a picture of the corner of my first quilt. I think it's a pretty ambitious project for a first quilt, and I always liked the way it turned out, even though it was never striking enough for a wall quilt, and it is not a useful size for a lap quilt or bed topper.

There are 13 squares (4 with gold/warm backgrounds, and 9 with blue/cool backgrounds), plus 8 pieced setting blocks. It is set on the diagonal, and hand quilted, mostly in the ditch or echo quilting.

All my ancestors are Dutch, and I was raised with a tradition of thriftiness, so all the fabrics in this quilt are things I had in my stash when I decided to get started. Nothing was bought specifically for this quilt (which explains a lot!).


My next foray into quilt-making came when my daughters got new beds. They were almost bunk beds, but not quite. One was a loft type, about 4 feet above the ground, and the other slid sideways underneath. I wanted to make quilts for them, but I didn't want the quilt to hang over the side: on the top one it would droop onto the lower bed, and on the lower bed it would get caught under the casters. So I made this very simple 9-patch/fence rail pattern, and I made it twice. It is also set on point, and hand quilted. I did fine on finishing two quilts until I got to the special quilting on the second one. The first one has my daughter's name, and her birth date, and her dolls' names, and some extra things in the brown strips, and the second one has my second daughter's name. Period. She will be glad to explain to you that that ALWAYS happens with second kids! LOL


This next one is a double Irish Chain quilt (appropriate for today, right?) I visited a quilt show, and picked up fat quarters in the pink colors, and I think about 1 yard of the blue, and then I had to decide how to get a queen sized quilt out of that much material. That is why there is quite a wide border of muslin around the whole thing.

I think these are very 80s colors!

The quilting is done by hand, and I had a lot of fun with it. There are larger quilt motifs in the pieced squares, and smaller ones in the border, with a line of diagonal stitching in the "chains."


The only other bed-sized quilt I've finished is this one for my mom. It is an Amish design, and is supposed to be Amish colors, but we didn't quite accomplish that. I pieced this one, and started quilting it. (I think I got as far as the purple center diamond.) At this point I discovered there are groups who will hand-quilt for a very reasonable price. I think that is the only reason it is finished.

Amish quilt

We won't mention the black, white, grey and red queen sized quilt top that has been languishing for 20 (or more) years, or the bright pastels my daughter requested that has been sitting in a project tote for 5 years or more, 90% pieced.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Weekend Stitching

After I finished the temari on Friday, I was in the mood to work on P's stocking. I made some good progress, he has a face. According to the numbers, I'm about 3/4's of the way done.


P gets such a sweet smile on his face when I show him this project! He likes it a lot, and he likes it that grandma is making it for him. I am going to try to get a picture of both of the kids holding their stockings when I get this one done.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Final JTA temari (I hope)

On Friday I finished my (hopefully) final level 2 temari. It is on a c10. Each corner of a triangle starts at the center of a pentagon. I had picked out 30 colors to use (2 colors each on 20 triangles) but I think I only used about 15. This isn't my favorite view of the temari, but the one I liked the most turned out blurry, so I will have to take another.


I wasn't sure if I liked this ball at all until I added the final element, the metallic/shiny braid between the triangles. I had envisioned gold there up until I pulled out the drawer with all the metallics (C was ooohing and ahhing over everything in that drawer!) and found this pearl. It filled the space left for it perfectly, it doesn't compete with the colors, and it adds a little shine. All good things!

Now I have to write the pattern! but I can start playing temari again, instead of working at it.